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Saturday, April 27, 2013

Star Trek: The Next Generation- The Best of Both Worlds Review. At It's Best

Star Trek: The Next Generation- The Best of Both Worlds Review
By: MattInRC

Here's why The Best of Both Worlds represents Star Trek: The Next Generation at its very best.

Fathom Event’s recent one-night showing of Star Trek: The Next Generation- The Best of Both Worlds takes us back to a heady day in Science Fiction television, marking an important historical period for both the franchise and the genre in general. Those of us who are old enough to remember its original screening in 1990 can’t help but smile: The Best of Both Worlds ranks as a top 10 – if not a top 2 – cliffhanger. Well-conceived and heavy on special effects, and complete with as gut-punch of a season finale as you could get, Worlds captivated an audience for an entire summer, as fans lamented about the fate of Captain Jean Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart, X-Men) after his capture and alteration by the Borg.

At that time, Trek was the only game in town. Fans of the genre, dying for anything set in deep space, were forced to endure two years of almost unwatchable Trek, as Picard and company fumbled their way through space. Fans grew restless as Producer and Series Creator Gene Roddenberry reminded us that his true vision of Star Trek was in fact a character-driven escape and less of the ‘Wild West in Space’ mentality of its classic predecessor. Season 3 represented the last try for many fans, and luckily the franchise stepped up. The Enemy, The Vengeance Factor, and The Defector were just part of an impressive slew of episodes which at least began to scratch the surface that The Original Series had attained on a weekly basis.
And although it debuted as an instant classic, this two-parter would also offer disturbing clues as to the franchise’s future: character development lost in a dizzying array of ‘Trekno-babble,’ unnecessary characters given more screen time than they ever deserved, and the human punching bag known as the Klingon Worf. But above all, the name ‘Rick Berman’ would do more to run this franchise aground than any Borg or omnipotent life form ever could. Sliced and diced into high-priced ‘best of’ discs and three other spinoffs – each of which less successful than the other – the franchise folded in 2005. But in 1990, no one was prepared for Worlds.

Fathom’s one-night release excels in nearly every way, from the excellent pre-show supplements and interviews to the booming upgraded audio track. Every phaser blast and starship explosion is cleaned up, along with ambient sounds such as bridge chatter and Borg Ship atmospherics. Colors and details on uniforms are sharp throughout, and facial features are lifelike. My only complaint lies in Paramount’s decision not re-shoot the special effects. Unlike CBS’ brilliant re-imagining for The Original Series, these scenes originally shot with models are merely cleaned up, sans a tantalizing CGI explosion of the Borg vessel near the end. It’s clear what Paramount is planning: release the seasons without much change to the special effects, and completely re-do them for the 30th Anniversary release. Part of Trek’s downfall included placing premium pricing on their products, which would eventually knock loyal fans and curious new ones out of the market. Depending upon how you feel about that will ultimately determine whether the impending home release of this two-parter is worth your time.

The historical significance of Star Trek: The Next Generation – The Best of Both Worlds cannot be denied, both in terms of its scale and scope. And while the series never fully reached this pinnacle again, we can look back on the one time in which it did.

Discuss this review with fellow SJF fans on Facebook. On Twitter, follow us at @SandwichJohnFilms, and follow author Matt Cummings at @mfc90125.

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The Big Wedding Review. The Film Is A Train Wreck

The Big Wedding Review
By: MattInRC

The Big Wedding is somewhat funny, but offers nothing new.

 Warning: major plot spoilers ahead.

After the movie Defiance, my wife and I instituted the 30-minute rule for movies: if we didn't like it at the 30-minute mark, either one of us could pull the plug. Too bad we as critics can't do the same for theater duds like The Big Wedding.

As wedding day arrives for couple Missy (Amanda Seyfried, Les Miserables) and Alejandro (Ben Barnes, Narnia: Dawn Treader), Alejandro's separated parents Don (Robert DeNiro, Goodfellas) and Ellie (Diane Keaton, Morning Glory) must pretend to be married again to appease the boy's biological mother and devout Catholic. Don and Ellie's biological children Jared (Topher Grace, Ocean's Eleven) and Lyla (Katherine Heigl, Knocked Up) have their own relationship problems, as one has just left her boyfriend and the other remains a virgin whose reasons are a mysterious as the Loc Ness Monster. Don's girlfriend Bebe (Susan Sarandon, Arbitrage) has raised this dysfunctional threesome, while Ellie went off to dominate a misogynistic world. Missy's post-recession family is all Cardashian in their lifestyle but will soon lose their house to foreclosure; they're just as sexually deprived as everyone else here, and soon it's clear that something's got to give. When it does, all Father Moiniham (Robin Williams, Dead Poet's Society) can do is marry our young couple before the others find out.

If all this sounds like a train wreck, believe me that the result is not pleasant. Director/Writer Justin Zackham doesn't offer anything new or even particularly funny with Wedding. We've seen him write far better (The Bucket List), and his debut directorial skills are wasted on an incredibly talented cast. Keaton, Seyfried, and Sarandon uncharacteristically mail in their performances here - it's clear they're merely going through the script's paces, hoping to be off-camera as soon Zackham sheepishly yells "Action?" And while Williams and the always-out-of-place Grace are merely distracting, it's the disappointment of seeing DeNiro behave so...old. His performance as the senior citizen Don is merely a decade-older version of Pat from Silver Linings Playbook, making us wonder when one of the greatest actors of our time will make one final gangster picture, rather than stoop to levels such as this.

Heigl's the only one who arrives on set with something other than dull to offer, until it's revealed that her ex-boyfriend whom she's pined for throughout the picture is rather dour and poorly put together. Zackman squanders what could have been an excellent cameo opportunity on She's Out of My League's Kyle Bornheimer, whose arrival takes every ounce of steam out of things. Seriously, one could hear a collective 'eeewww' emanate from the female representatives of our test audience as his unpolished self arrived to set the stage on fire. But a great cast needs a great script, and Zackman fails here as well. There's very little connection between his plethora of side-stories, which are poorly woven together and then hastily submitted in a 90-minute epic of malaise. As one implausible situation tumbles into another, one begins to wonder why more attention wasn't paid to the storytelling; this could have offered well-placed opportunities for comedy, instead of a series of poorly-conceived sexual gags surrounded by a thinly-veiled story.

The Big Wedding would have been funnier had it arrived before other ensemble films like Bridesmaids or Hangover; I'm sure there are still great stories of his kind left to be told, but this isn't one of them. Its empty and mailed-in performances overcome you like a party guest who's making an ass of himself while everyone's laughing because they're too uncomfortable to pull him aside. But more than anything, it makes you realize just how badly we need DeNiro in a real gangster movie before it's too late. And while not the worst movie of 2013 so far, it's just another throwaway that won't last past May. Skip this train wreck if you can. The Big Wedding is rated R for nudity and sexual situations and has a runtime of 90 minutes.

Discuss this review with fellow SJF fans on Facebook. On Twitter, follow us at @SandwichJohnFilms, and follow author Matt Cummings at @mfc90125.

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Friday, April 26, 2013

Awesome Compilation Of Summer 2013 Movie Trailers

Movies.com put together this awesome compilation of trailers for the upcoming 2013 movie season.

In honor of the impending wave of awesome heading our way, Movies.com is proud to present you with this ultimate summer movie trailer featuring many of the biggest and baddest films arriving in theaters over the next few months. Share it with everyone you know, and everyone they know. This thing needs to be seen!

Here's a full list of movies featured, along with their release dates:

May 3: Iron Man 3
May 10: The Great Gatsby
May 17: Star Trek Into Darkness
May 24: The Hangover Part III
May 24: Fast & Furious 6
May 24: Epic
May 31: After Earth
May 31: Now You See Me
June 7: The Internship
June 12: This Is the End
June 14: Man of Steel
June 21: Monsters University
June 21: World War Z
June 28: White House Down
July 3: Despicable Me 2
July 3: The Lone Ranger

July 12: Pacific Rim
July 12: Grown Ups 2
July 17: Turbo
July 19: The Conjuring
July 19: RED 2
July 26: The Wolverine
Aug 7: Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters
Aug 9: Elysium
Aug 9: Disney's Planes
Aug 16: Kick-Ass 2
Aug 23: The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones

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The Newest Trailer For RED 2

Please enjoy the new trailer for RED 2.

In RED 2, the high-octane action-comedy sequel to the worldwide sleeper hit, retired black-ops CIA agent Frank Moses reunites his unlikely team of elite operatives for a global quest to track down a missing portable nuclear device. To succeed, they’ll need to survive an army of relentless assassins, ruthless terrorists and power-crazed government officials, all eager to get their hands on the next-generation weapon. The mission takes Frank and his motley crew to Paris, London and Moscow. Outgunned and outmanned, they have only their cunning wits, their old-school skills, and each other to rely on as they try to save the world-and stay alive in the process.

The film features the return of Bruce Willis’ retired-but-still dangerous operative Frank Moses, along with pals Marvin Boggs (John Malkovich), Victoria (Helen Mirren) and sort-of girlfriend Sarah Ross (Mary- Louise Parker).

This time around, the aging heroes must deal with the threat of new enemies in Europe, which requires them to team back up. Fresh faces (well, sort of) this time around include Anthony Hopkins, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Neal McDonough and Byung-hun Lee.

Watch the trailer after the Jump...

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BottleRock Napa Valley Limited 3 Day Passes For Sale

Due to popular demand, BottleRock Napa Valley, the power‐packed music festival being held May 9 through 12 in the heart of the legendary Napa Valley, has released a limited number of 3‐day passes for sale, while supplies last. The previously sold out 3‐day passes were made available as the tracking and analysis of day pass sales have opened up this limited opportunity.

“We have been tracking our day pass sales to make sure we were able to offer up these additional 3‐day
passes, which have proven to be the most‐popular with BottleRockers,” stated BottleRock founder Bob
Vogt. “We anticipate these passes will sell out very quickly, based on our prior experience offering this

In addition to the best in food & wine, BottleRock Napa Valley features an incredible lineup of more than 80 artists, bands and performers, including; Kings of Leon, The Black Keys, Zac Brown Band, Furthur
featuring Phil Lesh and Bob Weir, Jane’s Addiction, The Shins, The Avett Brothers, Train, The Flaming Lips, The Black Crowes, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Cake, Ben Harper & Charlie Musselwhite, Primus, Alabama Shakes, Jackson Browne, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, along with America’s hottest comics such as Jim Gaffigan, Demetri Martin, Aasif Mandvi, Anthony Jeselnik, Tig Notaro, Jim Breuer, Greg Behrendt, Wyatt Cenac, Rob Delaney, Kristen Schaal, Bill Burr, J Chris Newberg, and Natasha Leggero.

The complete festival lineup can be found at www.bottlerocknapavalley.com

Festival passes are on sale now and begin at $139 for a single day pass, $329 for the limited‐release 3‐day
passes, $399 for 4‐day passes, and $599 for 4‐day VIP passes. Passes are on sale at www.bottlerocknapavalley.com.

In addition, a very limited number of luxury platinum packages, including
premium lodging, transportation, exclusive artist access, and more are available by calling Napa Valley
Reservations at 707‐252‐1985.

More information can be found at www.bottlerocknapavalley.com, on Facebook or follow on Twitter at  #bottlerocknapavalley

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Check out the teaser poster for PRINCE AVALANCHE starring Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch!

Magnolia Pictures will release PRINCE AVALANCHE on iTunes/On Demand and in theaters August 9, 2013.

Written and Directed by David Gordon Green, Starring Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch

An odd couple of sorts, meditative and stern Alvin and his girlfriend’s brother, Lance, dopey and insecure, leave the city behind to spend the summer in solitude repainting traffic lines down the center of a country highway ravaged by wildfire. As they sink into their job in the remarkable landscape, they learn more than they want to about each other and their own limitations. An unlikely friendship develops through humor and nasty exchanges, leading to surprising affection. Adapted from Icelandic film Either Way, Prince Avalanche is driven by wonderful performances by Paul Rudd, Emile Hirsch, and Lance LeGault. Writer/director David Gordon Green gets back to his independent roots with this character study, which shows his knack for realistically capturing people and finding meaning in their lives and dreams. With a soundtrack by Explosions in the Sky and David Wingo and gorgeous cinematography by Tim Orr, Prince Avalanche bucks convention by exploring male bonding in a refreshingly genuine way.

For more info:
Official Website: http://www.magpictures.com/princeavalanche/
Official Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PrinceAvalanche

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George Clooney To Produce Coronado High

In what amounts to their first move since winning the Best Picture Oscar for "Argo," George Clooney and Grant Heslov are planning to produce "Coronado High," a feature film adaptation of Joshuah Bearman's upcoming article, which Sony Pictures is in talks to acquire and develop as a potential directing vehicle for Clooney.

Bearman's article has not been published yet so details remain thin, but those familiar with the story say it involves a group of teenagers who are used to smuggle drugs in Coronado, which is an affluent resort city near San Diego, California.

Clooney and Heslov will produce with David Klawans, who executive produced "Argo." He's also producing an adaptation of Bearman's 2010 Wired magazine article "Art of the Steal."

Bearman is the award-winning journalist whose Wired magazine article served as the basis for "Argo," which Clooney and Heslov produced through their Smoke House banner along with director Ben Affleck. He recently won the USC Scripter Award along with "Argo" screenwriter Chris Terrio.

Smoke House is currently producing Clooney's period art heist movie "The Monuments Men" for Sony, which will release the film in the heart of awards season on Dec. 18. Clooney and Heslov are also producers on John Wells' adaptation of "August: Osage County," which The Weinstein Co. opens Nov. 8.

The company is currently developing several projects including a Terrio-scripted crime movie with Paul Greengrass at Sony, a Wall St. bailout movie based on the 2009 Washington Post article “The $700 Billion Man," and an adaptation of Douglas Preston and Mario Spezi's serial killer novel "The Monster of Florence."

In addition to "Monuments Men," Clooney will soon be seen alongside Sandra Bullock in Alfonso Cuaron's space thriller "Gravity," which Warner Bros. sends into theatrical orbit on Oct. 4. He's also set to star in Brad Bird's Disney movie "Tomorrowland."

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Thursday, April 25, 2013

Win Tickets To An Advance Screening For IRON MAN 3 In Sacramento

Win your tickets to see an advance screening for IRON MAN 3! The screening is on Tuesday 4/30 at 7:30PM at Regal Natomas Marketplace in Sacramento.

We have a limited amount of tickets to give out.

IRON MAN 3 is a 2013 American superhero film featuring the Marvel Comics character Iron Man, produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. It is the sequel to Iron Man and Iron Man 2, and the seventh installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, being the first major release in the franchise since the crossover film The Avengers. Shane Black directed a screenplay he co-wrote with Drew Pearce, which is based on the "Extremis" story arc by Warren Ellis. Jon Favreau, who directed the first two films, serves as executive producer, along with Kevin Feige. Robert Downey, Jr. reprises his role as the title character, with Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle, and Favreau reprising their roles as Pepper Potts, James Rhodes, and Happy Hogan, respectively. Guy Pearce, Rebecca Hall, Stephanie Szostak, James Badge Dale, and Ben Kingsley round out the film's principal cast.

First up make sure to LIKE SandwichJohnFilms on Facebook. If your already a fan make a friend LIKE our page.

Next make sure to VOTE for Sandwichjohnfilms for this years KCRA 3 A-List.

Official Website-

See how to win tickets after the Jump...

IRON MAN creates an army now it's your turn to create one to get us over the top on the KCRA 3 A-List. Make sure you Vote and share. Make sure you add IRON MAN 3 and your name is added to the comment section on the voting. Make sure your friends also add IRON MAN 3 and your name. The more shares the better chance you have of winning.

Winners will need to pick up the tickets.

Email me @sandwichjohnfilmsscreenings@yahoo.com. In subject area add IRON MAN 3, please include full name.

DISCLAIMER: ARRIVE EARLY! SEATING IS FIRST-COME, FIRST-SERVED, EXCEPT FOR MEMBERS OF THE REVIEWING PRESS. THEATER IS OVERBOOKED TO ENSURE A FULL HOUSE. THEATRE IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR OVERBOOKING. THIS PASS DOES NOT GUARANTEE ADMISSION AND MUST BE SURRENDERED UPON DEMAND. NO ONE WILL BE ADMITTED WITHOUT A TICKET AND ONLY REVIEWING PRESS WILL BE ADMITTED AFTER THE SCREENING BEGINS. Duplicate passes will not be accepted. Screening passes are non transferable. This ticket is NOT for resale. Reselling of tickets is strictly prohibited and punishable by law. All those found in violation will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. MPAA - No Recording This screening will be monitored for unauthorized recording. By attending, you agree not to bring any audio and/or visual recording device including laptop computers into the theater and you consent to physical search of have against you. Unauthorized recording will be reported to law enforcement and may subject you to criminal and civil liability (including damages up to $150,000). *This includes, by way of example only, smart phones and your belongings and person for such device. If you attempt to enter with a recording device, you will be denied admission. If you attempt to use a recording device*, you consent to your Immediate removal from the theater and forfeiture of the device.

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Is Jake Gyllenhaal The "Nightcrawler"

Dan Gilroy will make his directorial debut on the project, for which Sierra/Affinity will handle international sales at the upcoming Cannes Film Market.

Jake Gyllenhaal will star as a freelance L.A. crime reporter, in Nightcrawler, which will mark the directorial debut of screenwriter Dan Gilroy. Rene Russo is set to co-star in the movie.

Sierra/Affinity will handle international sales on the project at the upcoming Cannes Film Market, with WME Global and CAA representing North American rights. Filming will begin in late October.

Gilroy most recently co-wrote the screenplay for The Bourne Legacy with his brother Tony Gilroy. Tony Gilroy and Jennifer Fox, who collaborated on Michael Clayton, Duplicity and the Bourne series, will produce along with Gyllenhaal. Michel Litvak and David Lancaster also will produce as well as finance through their Bold Films banner. Gary Michael Walters will serve as executive producer.

The project will also include editor John Gilroy and cinematographer Robert Elswit, both longtime collaborators of Tony Gilroy and Fox.

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Scarlett Johansson To Star In Lucy

Luc Besson, the French director with a penchant for putting women front and center in his action movies, has found his next leading lady.

Scarlett Johansson is in final negotiations to star in Besson's latest helming effort, the action-thriller Lucy. Universal has taken worldwide distribution rights with the exception of France, Benelux and China.
Besson wrote the script for Lucy, which centers on a woman forced to become a drug mule. But the drug instead goes into her system, transforming her into an ass-kicking machine. She can absorb knowledge instantaneously, is able to move objects with her mind and can't feel pain and other discomforts.

Besson will produce with his EuropaCorp CEO Christophe Lambert.

Thanks to the success of the Taken movies, EuropaCorp has been expanding its English-language operations and recently hired veteran production executive and producer Lisa Ellzey to join its Los Angeles offices. The Paris-based production and distribution entity, which is publicly traded, has been on a tear of late. It announced a 61 percent revenue increase in year-over-year revenue to $48.7 million when it released its quarterly results in February.

Lucy brings Besson back to his 1990s heyday, when he made movies with strong heroines such as La Femme Nikita and Joan of Arc as well as, to a lesser extent, The Professional and The Fifth Element. He most recently wrapped the Mafia drama Malavita, which stars Robert De Niro, Michelle Pfeiffer and Tommy Lee Jones; the movie will be distributed by Relativity later this year.

The deal keeps Johansson in the action game. The actress, known for her turn as butt-kicking operative Black Widow in the Marvel movies The Avengers and Iron Man 2, would shoot Lucy after wrapping Marvel's Captain America: The Winter Soldier, which she is filming.

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Scream TV Show Coming To MTV

MTV is hoping for its next scripted hit in Scream.

Nearly a year after THR reported that the cable network was eyeing a television adaptation of the Kevin Williamson-created franchise, MTV is moving forward with an official pilot order, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

Produced with Dimension Films, MTV is currently in search of writers for the one-hour project while Scream director Wes Craven is in discussions to direct the pilot. Should Scream receive a series order, it would be slated for a summer 2014 launch and would join current scripted offerings Teen Wolf (also adapted from a film franchise) and Awkward.

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Tatum & Levitt Wanted For Guys And Dolls Remake

At long last, 20th Century Fox has closed movie rights to Guys And Dolls, and the studio will soon start the process of developing a remake of the stage and movie classic for what Fox hopes will be a killer pairing of Channing Tatum and Joseph Gordon-Levitt in the roles made famous by Frank Sinatra and Marlon Brando. There is no writer or director yet, but those guys are interested.

While we are all waiting for the eventual movie adaptation of stage hits like Wicked and The Book Of Mormon, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a musical adaptation get the kind of rise out of movie stars that Guys And Dolls has each time a movie deal was rumored. Years ago, it looked like Harvey Weinstein was getting the rights, with his Chicago exec producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron producing the film. Thesps from Russell Crowe to Vin Diesel, Hugh Jackman and others all tossed their hats into the ring to play the leads. Trouble was, Jo Loesser, the widow of songwriter Frank Loesser, never found a deal to her liking and declined to sign over the rights. Until just recently.

The musical was taken from Damon Runyon’s short stories that captured the rogue gangsters and gamblers of the 1920s and 1930s. Here, Nathan Detroit (Sinatra) has a town full of captive gamblers and wants to set up a floating crap game but needs money to do it. He bets his pal Sky Masterson (Brando) that Sky can’t get the wholesome Sarah Brown (Jean Simmons) — who runs a mission — to go with him to Havana. Frank Loesser wrote the music and lyrics, and Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows wrote the book. It won the Tony Award for Best Musical when it premiered in 1950, and won the 1951 Pulitzer for Drama, until the troubles Burrows was having with the House Un-American Activities Committee caused the Trustees of Columbia University to veto the selection. Guys And Dolls was then turned into the 1955 movie. The classic Loesser songs included Luck Be A Lady, and Sit Down, You’re Rocking The Boat.

Fox’s intention to go young is intriguing, and while there is no deal with either guy and there won’t be one until a script and filmmaker are in place, Tatum and Gordon-Levitt are about the two hottest young guys out there. And both of them are versatile with the singing and dancing, as they showed during Seth MacFarlane’s opening number at the Oscars (yeah, the one with Bill Shatner and the ill-advised “We Saw Your Boobs” thing). Tatum was elegant as he spun around the dance floor with Charlize Theron, and Gordon-Levitt sang with MacFarlane and Daniel Radcliffe.

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New Monsters University Trailer. Let The Games Begin

As part of their big CinemaCon presentation last week, Disney talked up the latest Pixar film, Monsters University.

Back when they were young, college-aged beasts, Mike Wazowski (Billy Crystal) and James P. “Sulley” Sullivan weren’t the good friends we know them as in Monsters, Inc. Nope: Mike was a small, nerdy, wannabe scare expert and Sulley (“Call me Jimmy”) was the oafish, exuberant, arrogant legacy student with a famous name and a laidback attitude to education. So what happened to make them bond? You’ll find out, as well as learning what happens when they both get kicked out of the scaring programme…

Monsters University boasts an impressive voice cast surrounding the central pair, with Steve Buscemi and Frank Oz back as Randall and Fungus plus new recruits Aubrey Plaza, Nathan Fillion, John Krasinski, Charlie Day, Helen Mirren, Alfred Molina and Joel Murray.

Watch the trailer after the Jump...

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New The Bling Ring Trailer

Based on actual events it may be, but possibly the most intriguing thing about The Bling Ring is how Sofia Coppola will portray the central characters, a group of teenage girls in LA who decide that instead of simply mimicking the lifestyles of the rich and infamous, they’ll rip them off wholesale. Can they be turned into sympathetic film characters?

Ripped from the crime blotter of the Los Angeles Times, The Bling Ring finds celebrity-obsessed Rebecca (Katie Chang), Nicki (Emma Watson), Chloe (Claire Julien), Sam (Taissa Farmiga) and others deciding that they want to steal from such pop culture icons as Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton, partly so they can feel the rush of crime and partly so they can get their claws on some swanky, expensive gear.

The mini crimewave tore through the luxury communities between 2008 and 2009 until the authorities caught up with the gang, who, based on the evidence of this, seemed more concerned with whether they’d made a connection to their celebrity targets than any actual wrongdoing.

With Leslie Mann, Gavin Rossdale and Georgia Rock in the cast,

Watch the trailer after the Jump...

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Daredevil Returns Home To Marvel

The blogosphere is going wild as Marvel chief Kevin Feige does interviews for Iron Man 3 and acknowledges that Daredevil has returned to the Marvel fold at Disney. We told you this was going to happen last August, when a last ditch attempt to shape a movie with Joe Carnahan cratered. Ben Affleck starred in the original film, and he’s doing way more interesting things now as a writer/director/actor/producer. Without him, it was pretty clear that Fox wasn’t confident about bankrolling a superhero-sized movie based on the character and that the brass at the studio wasn’t at all upset about coming out on the losing end of the witching hour of when Marvel and Disney got back those rights. The intrigue will be to see if Marvel vamps the blind lawyer character, and whether he begins showing up in other superhero movies and maybe a sequel to The Avengers. They certainly have made The Hulk viable after he was pretty much thought to be dead as disco. Here’s what we said last August:

Director Joe Carnahan seems to be ready to toss in the towel on the last ditch attempt to reboot the Marvel superhero Daredevil before Fox’s rights to the franchise expire this fall. Carnahan sent out a tweet today saying, “I think my idea for a certain retro, red-suited, Serpico-styled superhero went up in smoke today kids.”

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Pain And Gain Review. Wildest & Funniest Rides We've Seen In Awhile

Pain And Gain Review
By: MattInRC

Pain and Gain is a hilarious, irreverent look at drug dealing, torture, and sex toys in 1995 Miami. But is it worth recommending?

If you've been reading this site for awhile, you know our love for the unique movie. Sure, we love our large-scale superhero epics, but we're also big fans of the quirky and dark comedy. To us, film should push the boundaries and this genre is perfectly suited for such expectations. With the arrival of the based-on-a-true-story Pain and Gain, we have yet another reason to actually pay for a film.

Mark Walhberg (Ted) plays Daniel Lugo, a fitness nut at a local Miami gym with a penchant for smooth talking his clients into dubious and even illegal schemes. Although he was eventually arrested, Lugo goes off on an emotional but practiced rant, dressed in a tie and jean shorts. No wonder the judge gives him the maximum sentence. Ready for the chance at the big time, Lugo attends a workshop with the foulmouthed motivational speaker Johnny Wu (Ken Jeong, Hangover series), who orders him to, "Be a Do-er, not a Don't-er!" Lugo's lifting partner Adrian Doorball (Anthony Mackie, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) is tired of his small physique, willing to shoot up the latest designer drug to increase his muscle mass but unaware of its disastrous sexual side-effects. Lugo manages Sun Gym, a slick and colorful establishment known more for its people watching than its actual ability to encourage fitness and health. One day, the former convict Paul Doyle (Dwayne Johnson, Snitch) arrives looking for work. He's trying hard to reform by doing yardwork at a local church and wants an honest job with Jesus at his side. He and Doyle become instant friends, even though Doyle's choice of 'Team Jesus' t-shirts throws off Doorball. But Doyle is looking for a chance to make his splash - tired of being poor, he hatches a plan to kidnap and torture local businessman and general dirtbag Victor Kershaw (Tony Shalhoub, Monk), before forcing him to sign over all of his assets.

After recruiting Doorball and eventually Doyle into the mix, Doyle tries desperately to kidnap Kershaw by any means possible, including the donning of superhero costumes to hide their identities. This leads to some of the funniest scenes in Pain, as the inept trio stumble through one effort after another. Eventually, they nab their man and lock him up in a warehouse that doubles as storage for a variety of sex toys (no, I'm not making this up). Our trio comes across things I can't even put into this article, but their reactions are simply hilarious. Once the papers are signed, the three go on the requisite spending spree, with Lugo nabbing Kershaw's house, Doorball marrying and moving in with a phalloplasty nurse (Rebel Wilson, Bridesmaids), and Doyle falling of the cocaine wagon with Doyle's stripper girlfriend (Bar Paly). Upon his escape, Kershaw enlists the aid of private detective Ed Du Bois (Ed Harris, The Right Stuff), who soon begins to realize that Kershaw's wild claims are in fact true. As Doyle, Doorball, and Lugo descend into a world of murder while trying to find their next victim, Du Bois and the Miami Police put the pieces together and begin their search.

Pain and Gain is a odd comedy to be sure, from Director Michael Bay's (Transformers series) unique editing style of occasionally placing 'This is still based on a true story' labels in the bottom corner of the screen, to the general insanity of the supposedly true tales of our thieves took before their captures. Writers Stephen McFeely and Christopher Markus (Captain America: TFA) don't have to elaborate much here to tell their story, for the source material is so...robust. Bay apparently wanted this film produced for many years, and it shows. He perfectly bathes Miami in the bright colors of swimsuits, Pontiac Fieros, and stripper gear while giving his actors all the space they need to create their bizarre characters. Wahlberg is perfect as the smooth-talking ring leader Lugo - his over-pumped physique is matched only by his overblown interpretation of himself. To him, the world of Johnny Wu is real, able to be modified at any time simply via someone's will. His co-stars are more than willing to subscribe to the Church of Lugo, including Johnson who turns in yet another great performance as the oft-fallen angel Doyle, more willing to shy away from danger than embrace it. It's great when a big daddy like Johnson can be given such a smart vehicle like Doyle to show off what's become quite the resume. Mackie and Wilson play the unlikely couple with just enough physical comedy and ad-libs that their appearances together are like a car crash: you want to look away but you can't help yourself.

This is not a serious film in the least, a fact which might throw off those who were looking for a stirring and dramatic telling. I suppose such a version would have made for good viewing, but Pain and Gain's sex toy, stripper, slow motion hilarity gives it a unique and quirky angle. But therein lies the problem: it's so weird, so wacky in its depictions that I'm not sure the general population will appreciate it. Sure, it proves that Bay can do more than merely anger Transformers fans with his view of that franchise; but with Walhberg and Johnson taking a share of the theater profits as opposed to a straight paycheck, perhaps all parties involved knew a popular hit would be a hard sell. If you're willing to look the other way as to Bay's somewhat loose translation of the material (OK, more like 'very' loose), then Pain and Gain is one of the wildest and funniest rides we've seen in awhile. As part of your experience with the film, I encourage you to read this Miami New Times 1999 article which became the basis for Bay's story. It's honestly as crazy as the film. Pain and Gain is rated R for nudity, language, and drug use and has a runtime of 130 minutes.

Discuss this review with fellow SJF fans on Facebook. On Twitter, follow us at @SandwichJohnFilms, and follow author Matt Cummings at @mfc90125.

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MUD Opens This Friday

MUD opens in theaters this Friday, April 26, 2013!

For a list of theaters, please visit http://mudtheaters.blogspot.com/

Directed by Jeff Nichols, starring Matthew McConaughey, Tye Sheridan, Jacob Lofland, Sam Shepard, Michael Shannon and Reese Witherspoon.

Presented by Lionsgate and Roadside Attractions

MUD is an adventure about two boys, Ellis (Tye Sheridan) and his friend Neckbone (Jacob Lofland), who find a man named Mud (Matthew McConnaughey) hiding out on an island in the Mississippi. Mud describes fantastic scenarios—he killed a man in Texas and vengeful bounty hunters are coming to get him. He says he is planning to meet and escape with the love of his life, Juniper (Reese Witherspoon), who is waiting for him in town. Skeptical but intrigued, Ellis and Neckbone agree to help him. It isn’t long until Mud’s visions come true and their small town is besieged by a beautiful girl with a line of bounty hunters in tow.

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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Dodgeball Sequel On It's Way

The studio and the production company run by Ben Stiller and Stuart Cornfeld have tapped Clay Tarver to pen a script for a long-talked-about sequel to the hit comedy Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story.

The 2004 film starred Vince Vaughn as the slacker owner of rundown gym who gathers a group of misfits into a dodgeball tournament in order to defeat an encroaching corporate gym run by Stiller.

The movie grossed more than $114 million domestically on a reported budget of $20 million.

While Fox, Vaughn and Stiller have long mulled the idea of a sequel, little action had been taken. It was even a joke on an episode of Ricky Gervais’ Extras in which Stiller guest-starred.

Now the sequel will focus on Vaughn and Stiller forced to team up to fight an even bigger threat, according to sources.

Tarver co-wrote with J.J. Abrams the 2001 thriller Joy Ride but has spent much of his time in the comedy world and has a familiarity with niche, subculture activities.

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Pain & Gain LA Premiere Images

Here are images from The Los Angeles Premiere of "Pain & Gain" took place at the Chinese Theater in Los Angeles, CA on Monday, April 22, 2013.

Make sure to go see the film this Friday!

Daniel Lugo (Mark Wahlberg) is a regular bodybuilder who works at the Sun Gym along with his friend Adrian Doorbal (Anthony Mackie). Sick of living the poor life, Lugo concocts a plan to kidnap Victor Kershaw (Tony Shalhoub), a regular at the gym and a rich, spoiled businessman, and extort money from him by means of torture. With the help of recently released criminal Paul Doyle (Dwayne Johnson), the "Sun Gym Gang" successfully gets Kershaw to sign over all his finances. But when Kershaw survives an attempted murder by the gang, he hires private investigator Ed Du Bois (Ed Harris) to catch the criminals after the Miami Police Department fails to do so.

Stay tuned for our review that will be up on Friday.

See all the images after the Jump...

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Dallas Buyers Club Gets Nabbed By Focus Features

Dallas Buyers Club, currently in post-production, has been acquired by Focus Features for domestic theatrical release in the second half of 2013. The company has also acquired Latin American rights to the feature. Focus CEO James Schamus and Focus president Andrew Karpen made the announcement today.

A Truth Entertainment production, Dallas Buyers Club is produced by Robbie Brenner and Rachel Winter. Spirit Award winner Matthew McConaughey stars in the fact-based drama for director Jean-Marc Vallée (The Young Victoria). The film’s original screenplay is by Craig Borten and Melissa Wallack.

In Dallas Buyers Club, Mr. McConaughey portrays real-life Texas electrician Ron Woodroof, an ordinary man who found himself in a life-or-death battle with the medical establishment and pharmaceutical companies. In 1986, Ron was blindsided by being diagnosed as HIV-positive and given 30 days to live. With the U.S. still internally divided over how to combat the virus and restricting medications, Ron grabbed hold of non-toxic alternative treatments from all over the world by means both legal and illegal. Seeking to avoid government sanctions against selling non-approved medicines and supplements, he established a “buyers club,” which fellow HIV-positive people could join for access to his supplies.

The cast of Dallas Buyers Club also includes Gotham Independent Film Award winner Jared Leto and Golden Globe Award winner Jennifer Garner. The movie’s executive producers are Truth Entertainment’s Tony Notargiacomo and Joe Newcomb; Nicholas Chartier; Cassian Elwes; Logan Levy; Nathan Ross; and Holly Wiersma.

Mr. Schamus and Mr. Karpen commented, “Matthew McConaughey is an actor at the top of his game, and he incarnates Ron Woodroof by showing how his self-interest was galvanized into something much more. Audiences will want to take this journey with him, Jared Leto, and Jennifer Garner, as guided by their dynamic director Jean-Marc Vallée.”

Mr. Vallée said, “I’m extremely pleased that we are partnered with Focus Features. They have a long and successful history of sharing memorable stories. Ron Woodroof’s story is one of an imperfect man and his fight for survival, during a confused and desperate time. We all believe that this film had to finally be made, and we are all grateful and privileged to be part of this project.”

Focus Features and Focus Features International (www.focusfeatures.com) comprise a singular global company. This worldwide studio makes original and daring films that challenge the mainstream to embrace and enjoy voices and visions from around the world that deliver global commercial success. The company operates as Focus Features in North America, and as Focus Features International (FFI) in the rest of the world.

The current and upcoming Focus Features slate includes Derek Cianfrance’s drama The Place Beyond the Pines, starring Ryan Gosling, Bradley Cooper, and Eva Mendes; TheWorld’s End, the third installment of Edgar Wright’s trilogy of comedies starring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost; Closed Circuit, the suspense thriller directed by John Crowley and starring Eric Bana and Rebecca Hall; the true-life dramatic thriller Kill the Messenger, to be directed by Michael Cuesta and star Jeremy Renner; and the comedic fable The Boxtrolls, the new animated feature from LAIKA, directed by Anthony Stacchi and Graham Annable with a voice cast that includes Ben Kingsley, Toni Collette, Elle Fanning, Isaac Hempstead-Wright, and Tracy Morgan.

Focus Features is part of NBCUniversal, one of the world’s leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production, and marketing of entertainment, news, and information to a global audience. NBCUniversal owns and operates a valuable portfolio of news and entertainment television networks, a premier motion picture company, significant television production operations, a leading television stations group, world-renowned theme parks, and a suite of leading Internet-based businesses. NBCUniversal is owned by Comcast Corporation

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THE BIG WEDDING Comes Out This Friday

At long last, THE BIG WEDDING will be hitting theaters everywhere THIS FRIDAY!

Don't forget to buy your ticket now to BUY ONE GET ONE FREE… movies and weddings are always more fun when you can bring someone! https://www.thebigweddingmovie.com

It's everything you ever wanted in a movie…an all-star cast, lots of laughs, romance, and family fun. Check out your favorite stars including Robert De Niro, Katherine Heigl, Diane Keaton, Topher Grace, Susan Sarandon, Ben Barnes, and Amanda Seyfried in THE BIG WEDDING – this is one wedding you won't want to miss!

With an all-star cast led by Robert DeNiro, Katherine Heigl, Diane Keaton, Amanda Seyfried, Topher Grace, with Susan Sarandon and Robin Williams, THE BIG WEDDING is an uproarious romantic comedy about a charmingly modern family trying to survive a weekend wedding celebration that has the potential to become a full blown family fiasco. To the amusement of their adult children and friends, long divorced couple Don and Ellie Griffin (De Niro and Keaton) are once again forced to play the happy couple for the sake of their adopted son's wedding after his ultra conservative biological mother unexpectedly decides to fly halfway across the world to attend. With all of the wedding guests looking on, the Griffins are hilariously forced to confront their past, present and future - and hopefully avoid killing each other in the process. Screenplay by Justin Zackham. Directed by Justin Zackham.

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